COLUMBIA — Early Sunday morning, Columbia police responded to a call at the recently re-opened Athena Night Club at 1101 Locust St. and found evidence that gunshots had been fired outside the club, according to a police department news release.
A male victim hit by gunfire was later located at University Hospital.
Shortly after responding to the call, police stopped a car matching the description of one fleeing the scene. Officers then saw a firearm thrown from the car as it was pulled over near the intersection of Fifth and Lyon streets, according to the release.
Several passengers were taken to the Columbia Police Department for questioning. Afterward, police arrested Edward L. Brown Jr. of Joplin on suspicion of carrying a concealed weapon.
Columbia residents Zachary O. Lambert and Jamika S. Lambert were also taken into custody for outstanding warrants. Zachary Lambert had an outstanding federal probation and parole warrant, and Jamika Lambert had a municipal warrant for failure to appear.
Police say the investigation is ongoing and more charges may be filed.
Athena opened in the summer of 2004. According to reports from the Columbia Police Department, calls for police service have increased steadily since the club’s opening and have been in reference to more violent incidents.
The club closed earlier this year after a fight in which former MU basketball player Stefhon Hannah’s jaw was broken. He was later arrested and dismissed from the team.
The Missourian previously reported that the club’s owners cited a decrease in patrons as the reason for closing the business. Athena remained closed for several months but recently reopened.
According to a report submitted to the City Council, the owners of Athena met with city officials in February to address concerns about the club.
At that time, they told the city they were restructuring the business at all levels and were considering a change in ownership.
Searches of Boone County property records and the Missouri Secretary of State’s business records revealed no change in ownership of either the building or the company running Athena Night Club and New York Pizza.
Attempts to reach the club’s owners and their attorney were unsuccessful.